As an emerging museum we have piloted programs since 2006 in some of the most under-served areas of the Bronx and have touched the lives of more than 100,000 children, caregivers, and family members. The Museum provides affordable, accessible, interactive, inquiry-based early childhood programs and exhibits for children from Pre-K to 3rd grade promoting literacy, arts, social studies, health, history, science, greening and sustainability. Our overall aim is to be relevant, exciting, and inspiring.
Our programs are meaningful and connect children and their caregivers to each other, their culture, their community, the arts, the Bronx and the world. We are currently operating eleven programs. All programs are developed with the caregiver in mind, including the provision of resource materials places and ways to extend each child’s multi-sensory experience.
Our programs happen all throughout the Bronx. Click image to see all the places we have visited in the Bronx.
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Little Friends of Orchard Beach
Little Friends of Orchard Beach (LFOB) is designed to connect the people of Pelham Bay to the nearby park and waterways around Orchard Beach. It encourages teachers to use the story of the Native American Siwanoy who used to inhabit the Bronx as a tool to teach history and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math). By exploring how the Siwanoy used natural resources to survive, children will develop a deeper understanding of the role that nature plays in all cultures, thereby becoming stewards and caretakers of their own local environment.
Little Friends of the Museum
The Museum's newest program allows 2nd and 3rd grade students from P.S. 274 to help design, create, and prototype pieces of artwork that will be housed in the Museum's new permanent facility in Mill Pond Park. Throughout the school year, students will receive twice-weekly workshops from Museum Teaching Artists during their afterschool program (which takes place at Roberto Clemente State Park). Students also have the opportunity to visit several NYC museums and speak with local artists, designers, and curators to gain a deeper understanding of the artistic process involved in creating museum artwork.
Art Builds Community
In order to ensure that both local artists and Bronx children are integral to the design and creation of the BxCM facility, the Museum created the ABC initiative. By infusing our building space with art and artistic collaboration rooted in the borough, BxCM will uniquely represent the Bronx and the population we will most immediately serve. A key component of ABC is the launch of Little Friends of the Museum, which will partner Bronx children with a lead Museum teaching artist and ABC-selected artists in order to offer the students both a behind-the- scenes understanding of the artistic process and the opportunity to co-create site- specific installations. It will expose the children to the professional art world, allow them to deepen their understanding of artistic expression, and include studio visits. Importantly they will be able to offer their child-expert input to those prototyping installations, allowing artists to benefit from a child’s perspective and children to develop voice and self-confidence.